Mad geeks rush to buy unusable P4

Pentium 4 selling despite lack of mobos

First kid on the block syndrome has hit new depths - crazed technophiles are buying Pentium 4 chips at sky-high prices, regardless of the fact that mobos to support it can't be had for love nor money, making the chips useless.

The chip will launch for real on 20 November, but dealers in Taiwan, Belgium and the US already have parts available for sale - mostly ES engineering samples 'mislaid' by companies sent the chip for evaluation. On average, an early adopter should expect to pay around $1200 for a 1.5GHz P4, compared with the official launch price of $795.

ES parts rarely deliver the full performance of even the earliest production processors, making the huge markup even worse value for money. For this reason, leaked benchmarks for the new CPU should also be treated with a large amount of caution.

But the main drawback to paying through the nose to get the new chip two weeks early is that there simply aren't any mobos available to support it.

So what are these loons doing with their P4s - sleeping with them? ®

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